SINGAPORE - If you think that young adults between the ages of 18 and 28 are financially irresponsible and self-centred, you may just be wrong.
According to a survey conducted by Visa, young adults are actually family-oriented, aspiring entrepeneurs and financially-savvy. About 83 per cent of them save up to 32 per cent of their income with annual savings valued at USD $300 billion (S$370.65 billion).
Six in 10 young adults are living debt-free, with almost half of them (41 per cent) preferring debit cards to cap their spendings. They have a purchasing power valued at US$907 billion in the Asia-Pacific region alone.
They are also using cash for fewer transactions than previous generations. 70 per cent choose to use debit cards to avoid carrying cash while 57 per cent prefer it for convenience. 68 per cent of respondents agreed that the future will be cashless.
Rajiv Biswas, Asia-Pacific Chief Economist of IHS Global Insight, said Generation Y (Gen Y) spenders are an important part of key structural economic trends that are transforming the global economy, such as the rapid growth in household incomes and spending power of middle class consumers in emerging markets like China, India and Indonesia.
"With Gen Y disposable income of around US $900 billion in the Asia-Pacific region alone, and APAC forecast to grow strongly over the next twenty years, Asian middle class household incomes are set to rise dramatically," he said.
According to Mr Rajiv Biswas, Gen Y consumer spending in emerging markets will be an increasingly important driver for global economic growth. It will also be a key market for companies seeking to tap international export opportunities in a wide range of industries ranging from luxury goods to financial products.
Visa's 'Connecting with the Millennials' survey was conducted in Asia Pacific, Central Europe, Middle East and Africa.